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The Lost Art of Being HONORABLE

Doing Right By Ourselves and Others as a Mindful Practice

Many of us were raised with the edict of “The Golden Rule.” You remember that one, don’t you? Essentially “do unto others as you would have them do unto you.” It seems to me people used to treat each other with more kindness and respect, with an intent to honor their commitments to one another, and to lift each other up with an eye towards improving and enhancing each other’s lives. Was that some utopian vision of yore? I don’t think so. But in recent times it appears those social mores have gone by the boards to a certain extent – and I’m hoping that as conscious individuals many of us will do what we can to restore them in our daily rounds and interactions with others. Because to do so is a sign of embracing our humanity and empathy and is something we are in control of.

What it Means to be Honorable and Why it Matters

Another timeless saying in our society is “your word is your bond.” The implication is that we act with honor and integrity and that when we make a commitment to someone or something, we follow-through and do what we say we’re going to. People can count on us; we are accountable. And again, that seems to be something that is more the exception than the norm. We need to be able to count on each other in life and in business; it’s how we make our decisions about who to be in a relationship with – in our choices of partners, friends, and in our business colleagues, bosses and the businesses and organizations we choose to engage with.

When people behave honorably and honor their word, that’s when trust develops. Without it, at best we become cynical and operate at arm’s length with others – and life can become a long slow trod through enemy territory where we have to be on our guard at every corner.

By contrast, when we engage with people who are honorable (and we are ourselves), we can relax and be our authentic selves, do our best work, and have an impact in creating the type of society and communities we choose to live in, a world where we have each others’ backs, and where we can count on each others’ support. That’s the type of role model we seek to create as an influence on our children and future generations. In this orientation, we can truly thrive.

How Being Honorable Makes a Difference for Ourselves and Others

There are many facets of how this looks and plays out – many examples beyond what we can cover in this brief article. One is transparency in business. Are we authentic and straightforward with our partners, colleagues, clients and shareholders in good times and bad, even when things have gone awry? Another is practicing kindness to others. Instead of bemoaning that a homeless person comes into an outdoor dining area with their shopping cart and sits among you and your fellow diners – do you chastise them and wish they would leave, or do you pick up the tab for their meal realizing one act of kindness can have a ripple effect to relieve someone’s misery and an otherwise challenging existence? And of course, there is being honorable to yourself. When you make a commitment to improve your own health and well-being, do you do what you said you were going to do in terms of regular exercise, eating healthy food, and practicing other self-care habits that can get you there, or do you succumb to self-sabotaging habits that contributed to the state you’re in that you’re seeking to shift out of? These are all things that can not only improve our own condition and that of our society (one act and mindful commitment at a time) – but that have a ripple effect on those we engage with. And the best news is that we’re in full control of behaving honorably many times in a given day.

Ideas to Improve Being Honorable as Part of a Mindful Practice

*When you make a commitment to yourself and others, show up and take action, and do what you said you would do (simple as that). If you can’t or you’ve changed your mind, choose again, recommit to your new direction, and let others know what they CAN count on you for.

*Be authentic and transparent – that’s honoring in and of itself. If a mistake gets made or circumstances change and you can’t honor your original intention – let those around you know, take ownership and responsibility, and share what you are willing to do from here forward. Don’t disappear, “ghost” others, and retreat – that’s cowardly and makes problems worse.

*Adopt a mindset of kindness and do what you can to support the well- being and success of others when you can. It can be simple gestures like smiling and waving at others, lending an ear or a shoulder to someone who’s having a challenging time, or something more complex like making a referral or writing a check when you can that has the potential to make a real difference in someone’s life. You’re literally investing in someone else’s success and paying it forward. What would life be like if more of us chose to behave this way on an ongoing basis?

We don’t have control of a lot in this complex world – especially in times of challenge and chaos as we’ve been enduring with the pandemic and other global circumstances of late, but we DO have control over how we treat ourselves, and how we interact with others – which with daily practice and intent can have a ripple effect in creating the type of society and world we choose to inhabit. What are you doing to practice being honorable? I’d really be interested to know.

The Magic of Asking for What You Want

Do you believe you can have virtually anything you want? I do.

We all have a magic wand that can help us achieve our desires, but we forget that we do and overlook the power at our disposal to dramatically increase the odds of having what we say we most want in our lives. We simply need to make requests of others and ASK for what we want. That’s the big secret and the big opportunity.

I’m often asked about my experience in having Steve Jobs as a mentor for many years — and how that came about. We both grew up in the same town (Cupertino, CA) in what would become known as Silicon Valley; Steve was seven years older than I. When I was in high school, I was a member of a group called Future Business Leaders of America (FBLA), and we were challenged with approaching someone in business who we admired to ask if they’d be open to mentoring us. I chose Steve because I saw his genius early on (even at my young age) and was fascinated by Apple as the Wonka factory in my own backyard. I approached him at one of a couple of favorite healthy restaurants in town that I’d see him at periodically when I went out with my Mom.

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Client Spotlight: MultiView Media

I’m excited to share that one of the start-ups I’ve been working with over the past couple of years, Multiview Media, led by founder/CEO Ray Meadham has launched our multi-camera angle streaming platform. Verizon Media invited us to be one of their spotlight partners a few weeks ago at CES (including a mention by the CEO during his address), and this past weekend we powered a 3-day online fest with one of our partners — JBTV, the long-running music television program aimed at breaking new acts. JBTV provided historic content from its extensive archives and Multiview Media provided its OTT platform to deliver this content at home or via smartphone or tablet – all in a new and interactive way. Featured artists among the two dozen or so during the recent 3-day JBTV Virtual Fest included: Fall Out Boy, Imagine Dragons, BTS, Honne, The Struts, Smashing Pumpkins, Gary Numan, Filter, Portugal the Man, Yungblud, Charli XCX — and others, many of whom played for JBTV early in their careers. Some of the performance footage was pretty rare as a result.

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Bringing Much Needed Joy to the World

I’m a member of the Thought Council of the C-Suite Network run by Jeffrey Hayzlett, a highly sought after speaker, author, thought leader & the former CMO of Kodak.  A bright light emerged in a recent Zoom session from an inspiring woman named Sheryl Lynn who shared her vision of sparking more joy in the world.  This is her passion and purpose and it’s infectious — so much so that I’ve signed on as an ambassador of her organization to help make cultivating and expressing more joy a global movement. Read More ▼

Client Spotlight: AmplifyX

A trend that’s been growing over the past couple of years is one of investing in music and art as alternative asset classes for diversification in one’s portfolio – alongside other established categories like fine wines, rare automobiles, exotic watches, precious metals, and real estate. It seems stressful economic times often underscore the appeal of alternative assets like these. There’s a reason for this influx of late: music royalties and intellectual property (IP) have become desirable investment targets given royalty payments often remain steady over time despite fluctuations in the stock market. For buyers, artists’ catalogs are commodities that can be traded like gold or oil. “If the investment is good, if you’re investing in proven back catalogs, they tend to perform really well independent of any stock movements,” music business writer Cherie Hu. “If you’re investing in a tech stock, a lot of the bigger tech stocks move in the same direction a lot of the time. Investing in music royalties escapes that co-dependence. It’s pure passive income. You’ll make money in your sleep from it. It doesn’t require any proactiveness.” While it may seem odd to think of songs as investment assets, Goldman Sachs has predicted music revenues will more than double to about $131B by 2030 so putting money in songs could prove a pretty wise strategy to diversify a stock portfolio. Read More ▼

Unintended Casualties of the Pandemic

There have certainly been many casualties during the pandemic — loss of life, loss of jobs, and so much more. But small business providers and communities have also been directly impacted by the loss of many vital stores, restaurants, and of service providers. In my own community, I had a favorite restaurant that I frequented several times a week over the past 25 years (kind of like my Cheers) called Hobees. It did not survive. …

Client Spotlight: JEENI

I’ve decided that I’m going to write blogs periodically about some of the cool clients I’m fortunate enough to work with. One of them is a UK-based venture called JEENI run by long-time client, colleague and friend — Mel Croucher; a legend in the UK games industry. Simply put, JEENI is a multi-channel streaming service for independent musicians and performers, providing a unique showcase to put undiscovered talent in front of a global audience. JEENI artists get to keep 100% of everything they earn from the sale of their music and merchandise. JEENI audiences are given the power to vote, donate and be rewarded too. …

Same Old Story — Different Era

There has been so much turbulence and upheaval of late, certainly catalyzed by the global pandemic and the resulting consequences with layoffs and unemployment, uncertainty around a timeframe when we can operate freely in the world again, and the lack of leadership and political climate (at least in the U.S.). However, things have really heated up in the past few months with racial issues and hate crimes, and the resulting protest marches, looting and overall anger, frustration and outrage. …

A Time of Reinvention

I don’t know about you, but with all that’s going on around us at the moment it feels like there’s so much we don’t control these days. There are a lot of things we aren’t in charge of, but one of the things we can do is to go inward, reflect, and take stock of our lives — all areas of our lives. It’s a powerful time to reinvent ourselves and our lives if we take the time to pause and consider whether the choices we’ve made in the past still hold up with where we’re at today in our lives — and where we’re going next.

Some questions to consider: 

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